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October 3, 1999

Tommy Haas


ITF: Questions for Tommy.

Q. Just tell us about the match, why you got so far behind so quickly?

TOMMY HAAS: Well, I think Greg is a great player. He serves really well. He's a left-hander which makes it difficult to read his serve, never know where he's going. Obviously gives you pressure right away to hold your serve. It's important. He broke me right away in the first set. I never really had a chance to break him back. It's tough. Same thing happened in the second set, middle of the second set he broke me. Got a little unlucky. If you don't focus for a split second, you can get broken. He served so well that you have almost no chance to break him back. In the third set, I just tried to stay with him. I won the tiebreak, played a really good tiebreak. Fourth set he breaks me again, serving for the match at 5-3. Yeah, somehow I made some great shots happen, and get myself back into the match, got into another tiebreak. It was very close also. I think he won because he served really well today.

Q. Where would you rate this match in the week? Was it your second best match after the Agassi match or the best? In the beginning, seemed you were getting run all over the court.

TOMMY HAAS: You can't rate because everybody plays different. Greg Rusedski, like I said, is a big player who serves some aces, even big on the second serve. He comes in. Totally different game style. You know, against Andre, you have different rallies from the baseline. You move around. You can kind of play a little bit like a chess game. Against Rusedski, you can't do that. If he serves well and comes in well, you have to try to pass him and make the shots happen to beat him. I was very close of it happening. I'm very proud of myself for staying in the match. I fought till the last point. That's important for me.

Q. Seemed so much better in other matches than the first and second said today. Were you nervous?

TOMMY HAAS: No, I wasn't nervous at all. He doesn't give me a chance to actually break him because he's serving so well. If he breaks you right away, you know you're in trouble.

Q. Have plans changed for the weeks to come? Are you going to follow your schedule?

TOMMY HAAS: We'll wait and see.

Q. Next week Basel?


Q. You look more frustrated today as compared to the last match. Is this the worst that can happen as a finalist against a server like him?

TOMMY HAAS: No, I don't think I was all that frustrated. I kept calm.

Q. I'm talking about now, not on the court.

TOMMY HAAS: Really, no. I don't know why you think this is so. That is your opinion. I'm okay. I'm happy. I had an excellent week. I don't know why you ask such a question.

Q. A few words in German about this match.

TOMMY HAAS: Well, as I said, I think it's difficult to play him, a left-hander. He is an excellent server. You have to try to hold your serve. Took an easy break in the first set and he didn't give me a chance to come back in the match to rebreak him. As in set No. 2, I caught another break. Wasn't good in the third until the tiebreaker. Fourth he broke me again right in the beginning and served for the match at 5-3. I had a couple of beautiful shots, could come back into the match. In the tiebreak, it was rather close, indeed, rather tight. He served very well, played a good match point. At 6-5 in the tiebreaker. This is how it goes. I'm satisfied with how I fought, battled. I have had two excellent weeks.

Q. 2 hours, 28 minutes on the court yesterday. Did this matter today, the length of yesterday's match?

TOMMY HAAS: Well, I am a bit tired. I feel a bit drained. I don't think this was the reason today really. That wasn't the reason for having lost. 2 hours, 45 minutes was okay. I am a bit tired. I'm going to try to play well next week in Basel. We'll see how I can carry on.

Q. Did you think about the money at any point in time?

TOMMY HAAS: Not at all. I don't even know whether it was my fourth or fifth final this year. Each and every time I try to win a title, that's what we're talking about, I almost made it. Let's see next time.

Q. You took a break, treatment. Something serious? A thigh injury?

TOMMY HAAS: No. I simply was fatigued. My muscles felt a bit heavy, didn't move so well. I tried to get something, hot ointment on my muscles so I could move again. Well, I'm a bit tired. In fact, I'm going to take a break of two days or so to be fit again for Basel and play some good tennis.

Q. Now the Williams sisters are playing the finals. They play against each other. Can you imagine what happens between them? I suppose they'll have a lot of fun.

TOMMY HAAS: I suppose the father is going to decide what they're doing, whether they play entirely or already we know who is going to win. I don't know how the cookie crumbles in the family. I don't know. It's certainly a great match to watch.

Q. You mentioned yourself out of six finals, you lost five, you won one. You say you improved your game in many aspects. Is there any explanation? Tough luck or are finals a quality in its own that you have first to achieve whoever you play?

TOMMY HAAS: No, no. I suppose I showed some very good tennis in finals. Sometimes they were simply too good. Rusedski today deserved to win. He was very good. You remember Schalken in Auckland, great tennis. The only thing that disturbed me was Stuttgart. I think I should have done it. That's how it is in tennis. It's over with the last and final point. That is how you learn. I'm always glad to be in a final. Isn't that good enough?

Q. He had a lot of trouble in the US Open because he had been leading 2-0. Did you think about maybe getting him nervous today?

TOMMY HAAS: No. I knew, I saw. As I mentioned, sometimes these things can happen. You can lead, have a match point, and still lose. This is tennis. The match isn't over until the very last point. Each and every player knows. This is why people fight until the end.

End of FastScripts….

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